- More than 150,000 flamingos made their way to Mumbai during India’s coronavirus lockdown.
- Experts say they have seen an increase in the flamingo population in 2020 and believe the reduction of human activity in the metropolitan area is the cause.
- The greater and lesser flamingos migrate during this time every year to breed and feed.
As more than 1 billion people adhere to India’s stay-at-home order during the coronavirus pandemic, another bird of a feather is making the city of Mumbai its stomping grounds. More than 150,000 flamingos are taking over the Mumbai metropolitan region as they migrate to the area to feed and breed—a record number, per CBS News. In the process, the group of birds has created a breathtaking sea of pink that’s even more expansive than what residents typically witness around this time every year.
Although both lesser and greater flamingos typically visit India’s wetlands between September and May, this year came with a delay, which is why researchers believe these birds are swooping in a handful at a time. Assistant director at the Bombay National History Society (BNHS), Rahul Khot, told CNN that nearly 134,000 flamingos were counted last year in Mumbai, and he expects the number to keep rising in 2020, both within the area and in wetlands where they aren’t usually spotted.
Flamingoes in #Mumbai during #coronavirus #lockdown.
Video credits: @maverick891 pic.twitter.com/hkMRnhZC3N
With less people out and about, especially in such a large metropolitan area, the decrease in noise and human activity like construction and fishing has attracted flamingos looking for an area where they won’t be disturbed. It’s why conservationists say there’s been a significant increase in flamingos in areas like the Talawe wetlands or the Thane Creek.
Officials with the BNHS say that tranquility allows them to forage for food. “The lockdown is giving these birds peace for roosting, no disturbance in their attempt to obtain food, and overall encouraging habitat,” the director of BNHS, Deepak Apte, told the Hindustan Times.
It’s estimated that migration of flamingos in Mumbai suburbs is 25% more than last year, may be due to lower human activity by creating ideal conditions for foraging in the wetlands. It shows why wetlands are important and to be kept undisturbed. #wetlands #birds #migration pic.twitter.com/xEoRnqgSRI
The conservation organization was in the middle of tracking and banding flamingos when the lockdown in India went into effect on March 25. However, they say from what they know so far, there’s been a 25% increase in flamingos this year.
Residents have also taken notice of the abundance of pink, snapping up pictures and taking videos of the colorful masterpiece and sharing it on social media. We won’t judge if you watch videos of these beautiful creatures all day.
INDRANIL MUKHERJEEGetty Images
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From: Prevention US
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